Staff

Bruce Youngren  Executive Director, M.A., RCC
Masters Degree in Counselling from the University of Alberta. Bruce has a great deal of experience helping people resolve stubborn emotional issues, relationship concerns, addiction challenges, spiritual needs and workplace matters. He offers clients of all ages a place where they will find safety, respect, kindness, acceptance and collaboration. He believes that by doing so unique possibilities, insights and solutions can be uncovered and discovered. Bruce is also a Registered Clinical Counsellor, member of the British Columbia Association of Clinical Counsellors and holds a Certificate in Critical Incident Stress Management from the Justice Institute of British Columbia. He has also received training in alcohol and addiction treatment, Schema Therapy, Cognitive Behavior Therapy and Solution-Focused Brief Therapy. Bruce is passionate about providing healing, respect, integrity and leadership to the organizations he serves.

Lisa Barnes Senior Counsellor, M.Ed., CCC
Master’s degree in Counselling Psychology from UBC in 1989 and is a Certified Canadian Counsellor with the Canadian Counselling and Psychotherapy Association.  She has taught counselling skills and theory at several post- secondary institutions in Greater Vancouver and Victoria.  Her unique background as an educator and counsellor allows her to be supportive and understanding with fellow educators.
Lisa has successfully worked with clients for 25 years with issues such as addictions, family problems, anxiety and depression.  She counsels from a short term dynamic psychotherapy model, which is very successful at helping clients with anxiety and depression.  Helping clients connect with their true feelings is an essential part of her work.
Her rejuvenation and re-energizing comes from swimming in the Cowichan River as much as possible, as she deeply appreciates the beauty of the Cowichan Valley!

Jennifer Taylor M.A., RCC
Master’s degree in Counselling Psychology from the University of Victoria. She is a Registered Clinical Counsellor (RCC) with the BC Association of Clinical Counsellors. Her experience over the last 14 years includes Need Crisis line, Esquimalt Neighbourhood house, Victoria Hospice, USTAT Mental Health, and Cowichan Family Life. Jennifer brings a mindfulness based approach to counselling, encouraging awareness and compassionate acceptance of thoughts and feelings as they arise in the present moment. Jennifer enjoys her children, organic gardening, nature, yoga and mindfulness meditation.

Donna Brown M.ABS., RCC
Donna received her Master’s Degree in Applied Behavioural Sciences from Whitworth College and the Leadership Institute of Spokane.  She has worked as a Family Justice Counsellor for almost 20 years, mediating and helping families navigate through the emotional, legal and often challenging process of separation.  Since 1996 Donna has been in private practice helping family’s move forward during this life-changing event.  She has 8 years of experience working with First Nations people and is currently a Clinical Counsellor for the Nuu Chuh Nulth Tribal Council, assisting their members who live on and off reserve.  She assists many individuals who are dealing with the intergenerational effects of the Residential School System.

Donna brings a strong caring, respectful, accepting… sometimes humorous… approach to her practice.  Donna assists families, couples, and individuals learn to cope and heal from traumatic events in their lives, including childhood traumas. She is trained in EMDR, an effective therapeutic tool in dealing with trauma. Donna uses an eclectic approach in assisting people with their issues – whether dealing with couples’ relationships; supporting parents of special needs children; improving parenting relationships following separation /divorce and renewing their parenting strategies; or assisting individuals to deal with the many stressors in their lives that sometimes overwhelm or cause depression.

Diane Trapp M.A., B.S., RCC
Masters in Counselling Psychology from Adler University, Vancouver campus in 1998. She holds a Bachelor of Science from the University of Alberta since 1992. Diane has been a Registered Clinical Counsellor in good standing with the British Columbia Association of Clinical Counsellors since 2002. Areas of specialty for Diane are trauma (EMDR), depression, anxiety, spiritual connectedness, parenting, teens, couples, and financial challenges. Diane has experience working with Emergency Mental Health, Forensic Psychiatric Services, Child and Family Counselling Association, and in Private Practice since 2005.Diane has also worked with students in Private Schools as counsellor and house parent. To re-energize she enjoys taking time for hiking, gardening, playing music, sports, singing and laughing with family and friends

Stephen Chadwick M.A., CCC, RCC
Stephen, or “Steve”  as he likes to be called, has been working in the health and caring professions for over 10 years now.  In the past he has worked with various  populations including middle-aged persons, seniors, the elderly and palliative clients and their families.  He has also assisted in dealing with all of the attendant complications of growing older: retirement, refocusing loss of ability, loss of a partner, dealing with “Mom and Dad as they grow old” (and one’s siblings), and dying.  Steve’s clinical experience ranges from working with clients struggling with feelings of grief, depression and anxiety to those struggling with drug and alcohol trauma issues.  Steve uses an integrated combination of Cognitive  Behavioural Therapy (CBT) as well as psycho dynamic approaches, brief, solution-focused therapy and Narrative therapy.

In the past, Steve has also helped clients in emergency mental health who are truly in immediate crisis, such as suicide or immediate trauma.  He also enjoys co-facilitating psycho dynamic group s and has done so in the past.  Steve has also worked with adolescents and has experience with Drug and Alcohol Counselling and clients in recovery.

Making psycho educational presentations on mental health topic areas such as: healthy communications assertiveness and challenging false beliefs is another area that Steve has done in the past in order to empower clients and give them tools to help them identify for themselves when they might be in difficulty.

On the personal side, Steve is a keen gardener/quasi farmer and has an avid interest in all things agricultural.  Steve’s greatest joy then is “watching things grow” whether in the garden or in people as they blossom and become their best selves and reach for their full potential.

Azula Houghton M.Ed., R.Psych
Based in Victoria, Azula holds her Master’s in Counselling Psychology and is a Registered Psychologist with over 20 years experience in private practice. She has also worked as a clinician with Mental Health Services for 16 years providing crisis intervention, assessment and individual and group therapy. Her extensive experience of working with individuals, couples and groups has given Azula the wealth of professional skill and insight that will meet the unique needs of each of her clients. She also was an instructor at the University of Victoria and the University of Alberta, where she designed and implemented courses in dreamwork.

Azula creates a safe and nurturing therapeutic environment in which her compassionate support and empathy help people access their inner strength and achieve their goals. Azula’s holistic approach assists her clients to gain insight into the patterns and behaviours that no longer serve them well and to develop alternate strategies to build a solid foundation for living fully. Azula considers it an honour to assist people on their journey of healing and transformation.

Zarine Vogel Ph.D., RSW
Based in Victoria, Zarine received her doctorate in Counselling Psychology and Master’s in Social Work from the University of Wisconsin, Madison. She is a registered Social Worker with BC College of Social Work. She has over 30 years of experience in the field. Zarine works with individuals, and couples in a wide variety of areas. However, she specializes in stress concerns, including post traumatic stress and crisis intervention, has worked very extensively with depression and anxiety related issues, grief and loss, life and career transitions and addictions. She has also dealt extensively with intercultural issues and is working increasingly in the area of retirement. Zarine believes counselling is a process through which we can rediscover our true essence and tap into our inner wisdom. It involves working on letting go of the past and embracing the present. It is about focusing on what is working and moving to a state of strength and hope. Zarine has 2 office locations, one in Victoria and the other in Metchosin.

Michael P.Boyle MSW, RSW
Based in Victoria, Michael is a graduate of the University of Alberta and The University of Calgary. He is a Registered Social Worker with the British Columbia College of Social Workers. His counselling experience is in the area of integrating physical, emotional, spiritual and mental health. Michael has specialized training and experience in: Psychosocial Oncology (Cancer Survivorship), Clinical Hypnotherapy, Mindfulness Based Therapy, Solution Focused Therapy, Critical Incident Stress Management, Grief and Loss, Relationships (Couples and Families), Resolving Workplace Conflict, Managing Workplace Stress, Sexuality, Self Esteem, and Life Transitions.

His practice is strongly influenced by Virginia Satir (family systems), Stephen Gilligan (self relations theory), Jon Kabat-Zinn (mindfulness) and a variety of others. Michael has a systemic, holistic and process oriented approach to his work, and works with principles form behavioural/cognitive and mindfulness in his practice. He incorporates an attitude of curiosity and openness to personal and professional transformation.

He works with individuals, couples and families (as defined by the client), and works from the perspective that the symptoms of any problems contains clues that help us find the solution. He takes a down to earth approach and works with clients to help them discover their strengths. Michael has lived and worked in Victoria for 24 years and cultivates his sense of well-being through walking, hiking, gardening, meditating, travelling and enjoying time with friends and family.

Nicole Numan M.A., RCC
Based in Victoria, Nicole received her B.A. in Psychology, M.A. in Counselling Psychology, and was certified in 2000 as a R.C.C. in B.C. Her area of work includes individual, couple and family therapy (with a special interest in working with children and teens), grief and loss counselling, and parenting programs. She has worked for both public agencies and in private practice. In the therapeutic environment, Nicole draws from an Adlerian approach as well as from Cognitive Behavioural and Solution Focused therapies. Sessions are goal oriented and are explored in a sensitive, supportive and empathetic manner. In her spare time Nicole enjoys both teaching and playing music, and loves travelling and exploring nature with her husband and two children.

Mary Dolen M.A., RCC
Based in Port Alberni, Mary is a Registered Clinical Counsellor and holds a Master’s degree in Counselling Psychology and certification as a Somatic Experiencing Practitioner. She has the benefit and privilege to work with many populations and has developed an extensive knowledge of many of the issues that might bring one to counselling. She began her career as a social worker and youth care worker, working with families and teens in crisis and later worked as a college instructor in an employment/life skills training course. An early stint as a youth counsellor and family educator packed a passion of working in the counselling field where she has happily settled since 1991. Mary’s special interest areas include marriage and family therapy, grief and loss counselling, personal and workplace stress management, victims of trauma and critical incident debriefings.

Lindy Devine M.Ed., SEP, RCC
Based in Port Alberni, Lindy is a graduate of the University of Victoria with a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and Sociology and a Master’s Degree in Counselling. Lindy is a Registered Clinical Counsellor.  Post graduate training includes certification as a Somatic Experiencing Practitioner. Lindy has been counselling others since 1995 and is a client centered practitioner that uses a multitude of counselling theories, strategies and tools. Coming from a strength based, body orientated and holistic philosophy, she creates safety and support to assist people to overcome obstacles and life’s challenges. Lindy specializes in working with addictions, PTSD, interpersonal trauma, sexual abuse, stress management, relationship issues and grief and loss. When not working, Lindy can be found cooking, gardening, meditating, hiking, tending fire or sitting quietly in nature.

Pamela Ana M.A., CCC
Based in Port Alberni, Pam is pleased to offer counselling services for children, youth and adults. People say Pamela is a friendly, down-to-earth, and practical person. Bringing a wealth of experience to her counselling practice, people benefit from her years of experience in human services, which includes work in crisis centres, mental health clinics, public schools, colleges and FN communities. Pamela’s experience in adult counselling work has been with people with a variety of physical, learning, and mental health diagnoses, as well as those with challenging stressors and crisis. Her way of working is client-centered in a safe respectful environment where there is a mutual interest in building a supportive experience that benefits the client. Through compassion, professional training, humour and a genuine interest in the interest of the client, she engages in a dynamic process to resolve issues that are currently distressing the client.

Pamela also has specialized experience working with children and youth and provides effective approaches tailored to their age. Whether for the child or the family, she creates a space that is safe for children and teens to explore their hopes and fears with their families as they develop independence and identity. Pamela has had specialized training to support for friends/family members bereaved by suicide, those facing Adult Children Of Alcoholics issues and coping with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome Disorder.

Helen Peters M.A., RCC
Based in the Lower Mainland,  Helen is a Registered Clinical Counselllor and holds a Masters Degree in Clinical Counselling from Trinity Western University. She works in Langley, Surrey and Burnaby.  Helen is a Marriage and Family Therapist who uses a Cognitive Behavioral and Emotionally Focused approach. She is also interested in Family of Origin issues and Attachment.  Her warm empathic approach focuses on development of client skills, assisting them to recognize and accept their value and worth and to facilitate them in accomplishing their personal goals. She provides a safe place to support the client’s exploration of his or her own unique skills and strengths and tailors her work to each client’s individual need.  Helen volunteers for families dealing with ALS and has volunteered for BC Parents in Crisis. She has worked with Parenting After Separation for the BC Counsel for Families and has taken training in Critical Incident Stress Management and AAMFT Supervision.

Fay Ferris M.Ed., RCC, CCC
Based in Richmond, Fay is a Registered Clinical Counsellor and a Canadian Certified Counsellor. She’s worked with a wide variety of issues using a solution-based approach. Currently, she’s particularly interested in couples counselling: she uses her extensive training in The Gottman Couples Method and Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy to help couples stop fighting, feel closer, and be more loving. Other areas of focus include treating depression and anxiety with Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, trauma and stress with Traumatic Incident Reduction, Career issues with the Narrative Approach, Eating Disorders, addiction, parenting and adult family issues. Fay has over 15 years experience and has worked with EFAP’s extensively. Married over 30 years and having raised a family, Fay enjoys theatre, swimming, learning about world religions, and interior design.

Rowan Percy M.A., RCC
Based on Saltspring Island, Rowan Percy’s M.A. is from the University of Victoria and she is Registered with the BC Association of Clinical Counsellors. She has been in private practice since 1983. Rowan’s focus is to support client empowerment, self-compassion, integration and, where possible, a deepening connection with the life journey. She loves her work and is committed to living a conscious and compassionate life. Rowan works with a wide spectrum of issues with both individuals and couples: depression, anxiety, self-esteem, relationship issues, family challenges, work, drugs and alcohol, sexual orientation, transitioning, gender and life purpose. Rowan’s eclectic approach is based in mindfulness, bioenergetic analysis, trauma work, and attention to cultural context. In sessions she uses homework, guided meditation, core belief work, body-sensing and direct expression, always encouraging clients to develop trust in their own wisdom.

Jennifer Smith Administrative Assistant
Jen has been with Vancouver Island Counselling since 2003. Her pleasant and calming approach creates warm and trusting relationships. Jen produces our highly regarded and very well-received monthly “Choices” newsletter that brings our clients valuable information on a wide range of health and wellness matters (an archive is on this website). Jen lends her ongoing creativity to the design and maintenance of the Vancouver Island Counselling website and can be counted on for detailed, precise and timely statistical reports for the organizations we serve. She is a valuable member of our team and frequently goes “beyond the call of duty” to provide clients with an immediate and caring response to their needs.

April Shay Financial Administrative Assistant
April joined Vancouver Island Counselling in 2005. April brings a strong financial knowledge, behind the scenes produces the monthly financial reports, and completes all financial transactions. April presents the financials to our board members as well as assisting with the budget projections from year to year. In addition to organizing the finances, April is a valued support for Vancouver Island Counselling staff and provides us with her good guidance in the area of office management and appointment scheduling. You may also hear April’s warm, friendly voice when you call or come in. She enjoys this opportunity to greet and share her caring and compassionate nature to our clients.

Board of Directors
Our Board of Directors is comprised of representatives from our funding organizations and their respective unions.